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You may have noticed I've not been around much lately. This is on purpose -- busy life is busy. I have a new job in New York that I'm starting next Monday, and my wife and I are moving to New York State this week. I'm sorry to say that to all my friends here, but I'm really not sure if I'll have much time for DA in the immediate future. :[ Bye for now, friends.

Here is a feature of the work of the amazing artists that received the most votes in BarknSnap's "DOGS AT PLAY" contest. Please support these wonderful artists. :hug:



:thumb317054947: It's so close! by Polciak:thumb308536255::thumb308687515: black and white by Polciak



Boxer Smile by quasi-Virtuoso Minimalist by quasi-Virtuoso Columbia by quasi-Virtuoso Boxers by quasi-Virtuoso Abandoned Barn by quasi-Virtuoso



Mr. Cross eyes by PhotographsByBri With Wings Wide Open by PhotographsByBri:thumb307048611: You Light Up My Life by PhotographsByBri Mellow Yellow by PhotographsByBri






Super Cheese by BlurryShadow Smile by BlurryShadow Hated by BlurryShadow



Bubble by DemonDogZuko I LOVE WATER XD by DemonDogZuko Demon Dog Zuko by DemonDogZuko

Hello all,

I try not to make my journal entries overtly personal, but I have a lot on my mind right now, and this seems as good a medium as any.

My wife and I had been mentoring a little boy who lives nearby that had a lab/pit mix that he took everywhere with him. As is often the case, the dog got large, so the kid transferred dog duties to his mother. The mother couldn't handle having a young dog either, so she handed the dog off to some random passer-by.

That brings us to this past Tuesday. My wife was bringing items down to the car, and she saw apartment security holding the dog in his arms and putting the dog in his truck. It seems the dog was running out loose all night. So we offered to hold on to the dog. We talked to the boy's mother to find out what had happened, and we found out that she had no interest in keeping the dog. :-(

So we're taking care of the dog. We don't want to dump her off at the local shelter, since there's a high likelihood that she'd be euthanized because of her breed. We tried getting in touch with the two local humane societies in DC, but because we're in the suburbs, they won't have the dog. We also found out that even if we WERE from DC and turned in the dog, she'd have to spend time at the animal shelter regardless. While we network to try to find a home for this poor dog, we figure that she's better off with us than in a shelter. At the same time, she doesn't get along well with our cat Toby and she has occasional spats with our dog Ruthie. Moreover, I'm underemployed and my wife works two jobs, and we don't have the money to get her spayed (although I found out about a free clinic in Howard County, MD that might be willing to do it for free. We're looking into that).

I'm so very stressed out at the situation. The dog (who we named Lola) is far more high maintenance than Ruthie is, since she's only about 8 months old. Because I'm so stressed out, I'm not sleeping well, and it's preventing me from getting things that I really need to get done (like finding a proper job). And I'm having trouble getting through all the DA messages I have because I can't concentrate. The worst thing is that I feel like I'm failing this dog. I wish I could make her part of our family, but it seems the other two pets have kind of made the decision for us. :-(

Well, thanks for reading. I'm going to be seriously behind on my messages for a bit, so please send me a note if you'd like to reach me more quickly. Thanks all.


P.S., here's some pictures of Lola. She's a doll. :heart:

Lola by Shirimasen Ruthie and Lola by Shirimasen
Hello all! I hope the summer (or winter, for my friends in the southern hemisphere) is going well for you! I've been busy because I've gotten a part-time job as a professional dog sitter. :w00t: I'm obviously not using my master's in geology for it, but hey, it's a living. :nod: I guess you can expect more dog and cat photography in the future. :aww:

A bit of mopier news: my Mac's hard drive got fried and I lost a lot of photographs that I was storing on it. I managed to salvage all of the images off of the drive, but the images are 30,000 in number and 99% of them were taken off of my internet cache. D: I've found a lot more of other's work off my hard drive than my own. =p

So anyway, as some of you know, I've had this account for 7 years now and have only been active on it since last December. In that time, I went from 4 watchers and <500 page views to 106 watchers and (as of the time of writing) 5080 pageviews. The outpouring of support and positivity from this community is absolutely stunning. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. :huggle:

Normally, I'd use this space to feature the artwork of random watchers. Instead, I'm going to feature the various projects/fundraisers/etc. that my watchers/friends are engaging in.

TeaPhotography's Shelter Project!

I've been friends with Tea since almost day 1 of my return to dA late last year. I was first acquainted with her through THE SHELTER PROJECT. The Shelter Project is Tea's effort to support the dogs and Cats of the South Coast Humane Society, ( where she graciously volunteers her time. 25% of the cost of ANY prints or cards that you would like to get from Tea's gallery can go towards The Shelter Project. The rest goes towards the cost of materials, so this is truly a labor of love, as far as money and time is concerned. I purchased some cards from Tea way back in February, one of which was for my wife for Valentine's Day, so take a look at some examples as to what you can potentially get through The Shelter Project. :meow:

The Shelter Project stationery set by Shirimasen The Shelter ART Project by TeaPhotography The Shelter Project: II by TeaPhotography TeaTastic! by Iluvbiscuit2

More information:…

Aldistar: Tabbie needs help!

Not necessarily from one of my watchers, but I learned about it from my dear friend Tea.

Tabbie Needs Help!Tabbie needs your help. Who is Tabbie? Well, he is a 22 lb. orange and white, long hair tabbie cat who is in great need of surgery. I am Anastasia, Tabbie's human, and as a starving artist type, I cannot afford the cost of his procedure. I am not one who usually asks for help, especially with money. I know first hand what the economy is like and what it has done to many hard working people out there...but this is my baby and I can't help him alone.
Tabbie has a large tumor growing at the base of his tail, it needs to be removed and tested to make sure it is not cancerous. The procedure would take place at:
Hartland Cat Hospital,  555 Glade Rd., Euless, TX 76039 ph# 817-354-7877
The run down of the costs are as follows:
Tumor Removal - $175.00
Anesthesia - $45.00
Penicillin Injection - $26.25
Butorphanol Injection - $30.00
Clavamox Drps - $36.50
Lance Cyst - $50.00
Mini Histo Idexx - $150.00
Blood Work - $68.25
Total $581.00
I need to raise $600 as quickly as I can and I would

Tabbie is, appropriately, a tabbie cat belonging to Anastasia (Aldistar).

Tabbie by Aldistar

Tabbie needs surgery to remove a tumor from his tail, and Anastasia needs assistance to get her friend the help he needs. Anything is helpful, and she is offering commissions to people who donate $50 or more. Please consider helping somebody's best friend! :hug:

Sassawj's Operation TnR Project!

Op TNR Logo by t3hsilentone
Operation TnR's official logo, created by t3hsilentone

My friend Sass has help start a Trap/Neuter/Release (TnR) program for feral cats in northeast Ohio. TnR is a humane way to help control feral cat populations that can help lead to more free space in shelters and fewer euthanasias. Your contribution helps pay for cats to be humanely captured, vaccinated, given necessary medical care, spayed/neutered, and then released after being tagged as having been part of this program. You can help by purchasing one of Sass's photographs as a print/mouse pad/magnet/postcard (…) or directly contributing to the project via ChipIn (…). This is an amazing program that I hope that you can help out with. :nod:

Official website:
Sass's journal regarding the program:…
Photographs that can be purchased as prints, etc. that support Operation TnR:

Thanks everyone! Have a lovely week! :hug:
Howdy everyone! I'm going to use this journal space to promote a contest for the group that I admin. Feel free to join in. :aww:


BarknSnap's first contest!

I'm happy to announce the first contest for BarknSnap! :boogie:

The theme of the contest is: DOGS AT PLAY!




:bulletgreen:Let's show our dogs playing and having a good time! This can be interpreted broadly, but here's some examples:

:bulletblack: Dogs playing with other dogs!
:bulletblack: Dogs playing with their toys!
:bulletblack: Dogs just having fun!

:bulletgreen: This contest is for ALL MEDIA! Photographs and drawings are probably the easiest, but if you have a wonderful short story or poem about your pal having fun, we'd be thrilled to have you enter it as well! :aww:

:bulletgreen: This contest is for members only! However, this group has an open membership policy, so feel free to join!

:bulletgreen: The contest starts TODAY, 20 JUNE, 2012 and ends three weeks from today SUNDAY 11 JULY 2012 AT 9PM EASTERN STANDARD TIME (that's UTC -5:00!).

:bulletgreen: In the description portion of your piece, you must say that your deviation is for BarknSnap's Dogs at Play Contest!

:bulletgreen: You may submit one (1) piece for this contest! Please submit all entries to the "DOGS AT PLAY CONTEST" folder!

:bulletgreen: You may submit something to the contest folder that you've already submitted to the gallery! Please just update the description saying it's for the contest!

:bulletgreen: The piece must follow BarknSnap's general rules, available on the front page.


The Incentives!


:bulletgreen: Ranking will be based on GROUP MEMBER'S VOTES. I will detail more about voting as the contest deadline approaches, but ALL members may vote on what they believe are the top four (4) pieces submitted to the "DOGS AT PLAY CONTEST" folder. This will be accomplished by noting myself or the group. The four (4) pieces with the most votes will receive the following rewards for their awesome work:

:trophy:1st place::trophy:
150 :points:
Journal feature on this blog and Shirimasen's personal journal
Placing piece placed in "Featured" folder
Journal feature on Cazamelia's journal
Poll feature by sassawj
1 llama from Shirimasen and sassawj

:trophy:2nd place::trophy:
75 :points:
Journal feature on this blog and Shirimasen's personal journal
Placing piece placed in "Featured" folder
Journal feature on Cazamelia's journal
Poll feature by sassawj
1 llama: from Shirimasen and sassawj

:trophy:Two runners up::trophy:
25 :points: each
Journal feature on this blog and Shirimasen's personal journal
Placing pieces placed in "Featured" folder
Journal feature on Cazamelia's journal
Poll feature by sassawj
1 llama from Shirimasen and sassawj

The features will be of pieces from the artist's ENTIRE gallery, not just dog photographs. There may be more features by other deviants, as well. :aww: Also, as this is the first contest, the point rewards are a bit small — however, depending on the response, future contests may be more lucrative. :nod:

And finally, just to give you a few ideas, here's a few examples of photos of my dog that I might submit to such a contest:

Me and Ruthie-o Down By the Schoolyard by Shirimasen Impatience by Shirimasen Stick please. by Shirimasen

I'm looking forward to seeing some awesome pieces of our canine friends! Good luck all! :hug:


Future BarknSnap contest! Help needed.

Journal Entry: Fri Jun 15, 2012, 12:45 PM

|My Gallery |

Howdy folks! I hope the weather is good in your respective parts of the world. It's hot and humid in the DC Metropolitan area, as always -- my runs are getting later and later into the evening! :faint:

So I'm planning to do a small, pilot contest for BarknSnap, the group I recently became the founder of. I have a small amount of points (~250) aside for all of the winners, which is probably sufficient for a <100 member group like BarknSnap. However, if anyone would like to offer to feature the winners (I'm thinking first and second place with two runners up) in their journals or groups towards the end of July when the contest will be ending, I'd really, really appreciate it. :heart: Should be lots of fun, I think. :nod:

The blog entry for the announcement:


Here's hoping to a decent turn out for our first contest. :aww:


Mostly away? June 9-11

Journal Entry: Fri Jun 8, 2012, 3:39 PM

|My Gallery |

Just a quick update -- I'll be in Syracuse, NY this weekend for a close friend's wedding. Last I checked, none of my in-laws had wireless internet, so I don't expect to be online much. Have a lovely weekend, all! :hug:


Life update + Request for advice running a group!

Journal Entry: Fri Jun 1, 2012, 10:21 AM

|My Gallery |

Howdy friends and watchers! I hope June meets you well. It's still unseasonably warm in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, which is making the fetid swamp humidity even worse than usual. My wife and I are considering moving back to the the Finger Lakes region of New York State, where we went to undergrad. I'm looking forward to hopefully seeing a real autumn again. :boogie: I have officially graduated with my Master's in Geology, by the way! I'll be officially unemployed in twelve days, so you may expect more photography from me in June and July. =p And even though I just finished my Master's, I'm thinking about earning my teacher's certification so that I can possibly teach Earth Science to high schoolers. That may require some education classes to round out my repertoire, which I don't look forward to. ._.

So for the meat of this journal: I wanted to get some advice from some people that have experience as a founder or contributor to a DA group, or even people that frequent various groups that might have some input. My friend Benita:


could no longer run the group that she founded,


a dog photography group. I agreed to take over said group for her and try to revamp it. I'm starting to develop some ideas for it, such as new ideas for folders, opening it up to all media, a draft of new rules, etc., but any advice about running or revamping a group would be greatly appreciated. Cheers!

P.S., feel free to join


and contribute! Hehe. Just bear in mind, I'll probably be moving around any work that you contribute within the next week to a new folder.


Frustration... + Featured watchers!

Journal Entry: Sun May 13, 2012, 10:28 AM

|My Gallery |

My wife and I went to a pet expo yesterday -- it was sort of a local showcase of dog-related things. We brought the dog despite my apprehensions. I know how people tend to act around my little pibble, but we brought her so that people could see that she is fun and friendly. For the most part, we had positive feedback about her. The negative things always stand out more though; one person physically backed away, one woman forbade her child from petting her, and the people from the local agility club ignored us when my wife and I tried to inquire about getting our dog involved with agility. The worst was probably when we introduced Ruthie to a burly mastiff-type dog. The owner and his dog were awesome, but nearly EVERYBODY around was looking at us like we were going to start a fight in their midst. I love Ruthie and I will always be happy that she came into our lives, but I had really no idea what we were getting ourselves into when we took in this little, scared stray. I'd take her again in a heartbeat with the knowledge I have now, though. :]

Anyway, it's been ages since I've done a featured watchers journal, so I thought I'd take the opportunity to do so now.

dr-oatcake is a good friend of mine here on DA, and she's a wonderful photographer and digital artist. Please consider looking at her gallery and possibly watching her!



Benita (Sunnada) was kind enough to feature me in a journal recently, so I thought I'd return the favor. She is skilled in far more art media than I am, but she excels in digital art, animation, and photography.


Cheeky Star by Sunnada Lone Star by Sunnada Wolfy Run by Sunnada Breeders by Sunnada Indian Red by Sunnada Yoga is difficult by Sunnada Ribone by Sunnada The face a mother loves by Sunnada

Finally, Will (NiftyBadger) is a very talented nature photographer/traditional artist from the UK, as well as an awesome supporter of my work. He always asks for constructive criticism of his work, so please do that if you have the time! A small sampling of his gallery:


Hills and Fields by NiftyBadger Flower by NiftyBadger Doodle - City-Undercity by NiftyBadger Yosemite by NiftyBadger Rock face - winter by NiftyBadger Some Cow by NiftyBadger House on the Moor by NiftyBadger Lake BW by NiftyBadger

Please consider supporting these fine artists! Have a lovely week, all.


I am the master of geology! + 50 watchers feature!

Journal Entry: Tue Apr 3, 2012, 7:43 PM

|My Gallery |

Or close to one, anyway. I passed my thesis defense! :boogie: I have plenty of of revisions to go through, but I am very close to being done. Now I just need to find a job. :]

I am happy to announce that I have reached 50 watchers! What a wonderful feeling. :] I want to take the time to thank all of you for your wonderful support of my photography. I've said this to some people, but I'll say it to all of you: I lacked confidence in my work for a long time. Thanks to my lovely, supportive wife and all of you, I am a lot more confident in showing my photography to the public. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. :heart:

To celebrate, I will do a feature of my 50th and 51st watchers.

Rika (Rikkanna) is a talented photographer and traditional artist. She's had some very kind words about my photography lately that really made me smile, so I thought that a small feature would be the least I could do. :]

Friction is Fun... by Rikkanna Strider Colored Pencil by Rikkanna:thumb293585162: Happy HowlOWeen by Rikkanna Markley by Rikkanna


Sara (broshsara) is a very talented photographer that has also had some very kind words for me recently. Although she displays a wide variety of beautiful subjects, I particularly love her landscape photography of her native Israel.


Thank you, all. :wave: As always, check out TeaPhotography's gallery and read about the Shelter Project, a very worthy cause that will help out animals in need.

Busy busy!

Journal Entry: Wed Mar 14, 2012, 9:09 PM

|My Gallery |

Hello friends, supporters, and watchers,

I hope you will forgive me for the lack of updates and photography this week. I am currently working on finishing my M.S. in Geology, which involves finishing up my thesis this week! Thank you so much for your patience, support, and friendship. Wish me luck!


A personal update + featured watchers!

Journal Entry: Sun Mar 4, 2012, 8:01 PM

|My Gallery |

Hello again, all! I have nearly doubled my watchers since my last journal update. This means so, so much to me. I'd like to thank watchers, old and new, from the bottom of my heart. You are all amazing supporters and artists. :heart:

You will have to forgive me for the slow trickle of photographs lately. My master's thesis is due in less than two weeks! :O And I had a job interview this past weekend in New York City! :boogie: So my photography has been on the backburner the past week or so. I will try my best to have at least one new piece up later this week.

I'm going to feature two more of my watchers today - I hope that all of you will be kind enough to check out their work and perhaps watch them yourselves!

Linne is an amazing photographer from Mexico who does some very lovely portrait photography. I've only met her recently, but I am eager to see more of her work in the future. :]

:thumb287748402: Petite Rose by linna2m Old style II by linna2m Old style I by linna2m the right! by linna2m Savitri by linna2m

DemonDogZuko does both drawings and photography very well, but what drew me to her initially was her dog photography. Whether her subjects are posing for the camera or performing at an agility course, they are wonderful examples of some very happy dogs.
Corndog by DemonDogZuko Milo by DemonDogZuko Milo by DemonDogZuko Belgian Shepherd Dog by DemonDogZuko Happy Staffie by DemonDogZuko Finn by DemonDogZuko

Lastly, as in my last entry, I wanted to give a shout out to my friend Tea:
Tea is not only a talented photographer, but she has a very giving spirit. Tea has an ongoing project called "The Shelter Project." 25% of the proceeds from any prints or cards that you would like to get from Tea's gallery will go towards the South Coast Humane Society, where Tea volunteers. Check out the lovely stationery set I received from her:

The Shelter Project stationery set by Shirimasen

Please consider supporting The Shelter Project, as well as a very talented woman. You can read more about it here:…

Thanks all!

A big thank you to Tea + The Shelter Project!

Journal Entry: Sat Feb 11, 2012, 9:17 PM

|My Gallery |

Hello all! I want to give a big thank you to everyone that has faved some of my photographs or has added me to their watchlist over the past month and a half! I have had this account for seven (!) years now. I originally uploaded some of the photographs I did in high school and basically left the account alone afterwards. Recently, my wife saw the photos I produced then and encouraged me to start taking up photography again. So here I am! :wave: I've been a bit lax about new material lately (grad school! D: ), but will try to have a couple of things up this coming week.

Out of all the great people I've interacted with on DA so far, I want to especially thank my friends Nickie (Satsujin89) and Fuyu-no-sakura for the many, many faves and warm support. I've included a couple of favorites of mine from their collections below. Check them out!

Nickie: :iconsatsujin89:

Fuyu-no-sakura: :iconfuyu-no-sakura:
Melrose Abbey by Fuyu-no-sakura Greetsiel haven by Fuyu-no-sakura Standing on the shore by Fuyu-no-sakura Summer holiday by Fuyu-no-sakura

Okay, now for the meat of this journal! I wanted to thank Tea TeaPhotography for the hand-made stationery set that I received today! She did a wonderful job on it! Check them out here:

The Shelter Project stationery set by Shirimasen

This stationery set that I got from Tea will go towards The Shelter Project, which helps support the South Coast Humane Society, where Tea volunteers. Please read more about The Shelter Project at Tea's subgallery:….

Thanks for reading, and thanks again for all the faves and watches, all! :huggle: